Tuesday, July 13, 2010

International '80s Trash: Turkish Star Wars

What is there to say about this movie?  It has a reputation of its own, so I may not need to say much.  One thing to note is that this movie is not a parody like Turkish Star Trek was.  No, it is actually a serious film.  Well, as much as a bad, Turkish action film with space aliens can be.  Why is it known as Turkish Star Wars then?  It's quite simple- it blatantly steals footage from Lucas films!  They actually go even a step further than that, but I'll get to that later.  What you need to know is that this movie is weird, rare and available to watch for free thanks to Google.  See, our search-engine overlords can be good for something!  This thing is...well, it speaks for itself.  Unfortunately, it speaks Turkish, so that leaves me to translate.  Get our your book of copyright law for my review of...
The film begins with a three-minute long credit sequence against a blank screen- joy.  After this, we get five minutes of narration juxtaposed over badly-stretched and over-exposed shots from Star Wars: Episode IV.  Yeah, they just stole this.  On top of that, none of it fits any context or matches up to anything they actually shot!  Oh yeah, the narration makes no sense either.  Apparently, there is an evil force that is trying to destroy the Earth, despite there being a galactic state.  They say that nobody has managed to destroy the Earth, but apparently they have been able to destroy and separate parts of it.  There is also some sort of shield over the pieces that protects them.  Make up your mind, movie!  It's bad enough that the subtitle track I got is a phonetic track, meaning the grammar is shit, but you're not helping here!  After a lot of stock footage, we see our two heroes- a pair of middle-aged Turkish men in spacesuits- joy.  They crash-land on an alien planet...which resembles any desert anywhere.  They wander around before being attacked by a group of skeleton-armored guys on horseback.  When I think 'Star Wars,' I think 'men on horseback with spears.'  As if the film is trying to top themselves, they steal the theme music from Indiana Jones for the scene!  I sure hope that they don't use it three or four more times.

Unfortunately, our heroes don't make it too far before they are captured.  They are taken to a...different part of the desert to watch a series of gladiatorial games.  How does this relate to Star Wars or sci-fi at all?  It doesn't.  Our heroes wait until a bunch of people die before they decide to fight back.  My heroes?  After more fighting and Indian Jones music, they escape with the planet's residents...who are human.  They explain some silly stuff about ancient civilizations, the alien overlords and how they are seeking a human brain in order to turn the tide of battle.  Raise your hand if you care- didn't think so.  Another fight ensues, this time involving some big, red monsters that look like sports mascots.  I'm supposed to take this seriously, huh?  After that, our heroes realize that they need to be their best for the fight ahead- despite doing fine so far- and decide what they must do.  Montage time!  They train by punching rucks, jumping around and kicking rocks.  Good, now all of your bones will be broken before the battle!  We get a romantic sub-plot involving the older hero, whose main skill appears to be bouncing off of just-off-camera trampolines.  Fun fact: that's a sport in Japan!  Our heroes go into town to fulfill the requirement of a Cantina scene, complete with- you guessed it- a fight scene.  Is this movie in a loop?

Finally, the silly-looking villain reveals himself and shows off his power of film editing.  It's...ridiculous, to say the least.  They get captured, setting up an escape scene, but only after they steal the 'hero falls for the Emperor's daughter' plot-point from 1980's Flash Gordon.  The older man escapes, while his companion remains behind.  They try to take control of his brain, but to no avail.  It's all part of the plan, you see!  The man defeats a Wookie-wannabe by jumping around for five minutes and finally landing.  No, really.  After more fighting, the pair reunited and use a silly-looking prop sword to help turn the tide.  The younger hero goes off alone, however, and ends up getting killed.  Thankfully, the real hero is here to...dip his hand in water and...have gloves appear on his hand.  This is a real plot point, people!!!  More fighting occurs, this time juxtaposed over more stolen Star Wars footage and random shots of the Emperor gloating.  Take a shot every time you see a TIE-Fighter and you'll think this movie is great!  The battle between our hero and the Emperor finally takes place, but it seems to be against our hero.  After some rock-kicking and silly jumping, he just grabs the guy, pummels him and splits him in two.  He decides to just leave via some stock footage after that.  The End.

Do I need to say it?  This movie is terrible!  It is full of schlocky moments, bad editing and pure silliness!  The blatant theft of Star Wars footage is unforgivable, but I guess it's easier to laugh at now, as opposed to in 1982.  Never mind that it makes no sense, doesn't match the footage and is looped a dozen times over.  The actual film makes no sense- plain and simple.  Who are these people?  What are they doing?  Why should I care?  That said, there is some campy fun to be taken from this silly, silly movie.  The action makes no sense and is pure ridiculousness!  What else can I say about this movie?  It makes no sense, has no continuity and pretends to be more important by way of using Star Wars footage.  It's not.  It's a funny piece of history and a good example of why we should strongly enforce copyright law!  Then again, it's free to watch on Google.  I guess that's fair.

Next up, I bring you Lamberto Bava's follow-up to The Ogre.  Thankfully, they don't pretend that this crap is a Demons sequel too!  Stay tuned...

3 comments:

  1. Hi, I must to leave a comment. It´s good to find out these kind of films, I saw it two years ago and it was really funny. But I can realize that you haven´t searched any info about this turkish film. In the 80´s the US films where banned in Turkey, so they start to make these kind of versions (there is one of Spider Man, Captain America and El Santo (3 dev Adam)). It´s really easy between your narrow vision, to express the pure interest of private coorporation, thinking that your culture is the only one in the world. And please, when you write about a film, read and research before.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Actually, I know a pretty decent amount about Turkish cinema. I know about the Pop Cinema explosion and it's dramatic fall. I know about how many films are lost to time due to the film stock being burned down for the silver.

    As far as films like 'Turkish Star Wars,' they rank amongst other films like 'The Dragon Lives Again.' They ignored copyright law, since the odds of the films even being screened elsewhere were very unlikely. Obviously, since I own 'Dragon' and 'Star Wars' is being streamed by Google, they were wrong.

    ReplyDelete
  3. BURN! Take that, Anonymous. You get your kicks by trying to make people feel inferior, stupid, and not to par with your own IQ. Suck it.

    Great article, TimTE01

    ReplyDelete